Richard Mercer is a Connecticut native and a graduate of the University of Cincinnati, where he played NCAA Division 1A football as a tailback. He has always been physically active and spent years in gyms working out with weights and doing various forms of cardio exercise. As a teacher, Richard draws from his extensive background in competitive athletics, blending focus, discipline and compassion to bring out the very best in his students.
A friend introduced him to Bikram Yoga at the end of 2003 and, although he'd never practiced any form of yoga before, he gave it a try and got hooked. After years of being tight and sore, he found that he soon became more flexible and his soreness dissipated. He was amazed by the intensity of the workout, and has been able to remain in top physical condition.
After over twenty years as a top level executive in Corporate America, and three years practicing Bikram Yoga, he decided to leave corporate and go to Bikram Teacher Training in April of 2007. This encompassed nine weeks of full time training in Honolulu, HI, where over 300 trainees came from 37 countries around the world. He completed two Bikram classes per day, 5 days per week, additional classes on weekends, and he attended daily lectures and posture clinics. His training included lessons in anatomy, physiology and yoga theory. All told, he spent over 900 hours in training prior to graduating and becoming certified by Bikram's Yoga College of India. Richard continues to study with Bikram and his senior teachers to keep his practice and instruction current.
Richard was also the winner of the "Longest Awkward Pose Award" for which he holds the current World Record at 3 minutes, 33 seconds.
Recognizing the value that this yoga could bring to so many people, Richard decided to open a studio where he resides in Simsbury. He, and his partner Laurie Krause, located and purchased the perfect property. Once the purchase was complete in June of 2008, the fun began and the construction started that fall. The process certainly brought newfound expertise in patience and developed a much deeper understanding of the saying: "Don't push the river, it flows." Now that we're finally open, it's all just a fond memory!
Richard and Laurie live in Simsbury with his son, Blake, her son Zack, and daughter, Min. They are joined by dog Spike, a small pond full of koi, various passing bears, foxes, deer and koi-eating herons.